Coed-y-Brenin Forest Park

Coed-y-Brenin deserves a mention for many reasons... it's a great place to go mountain biking, there's a friendly welcome from the Forest Enterprise and Sian Roberts (star of the Fisher team until that Pizza girl snatched the dough) dishes up wicked cakes at the Visitor Centre cafe ... but that wouldn't be the whole truth and nothing but... because Sian and her husband Dafydd have helped designed some great marked trails in the forest.

There are routes for families and novices right up to expert. Sian boasts that in summer the singletrack is as good as Vail in Colorado (I'm going to be there in summer to validate this claim and I'm expecting the sun to shine... right?). Mountain bikers are positively welcomed and more parts of the forest are being opened up all the time.
There are miles and miles of trails, including the 7 mile Red Bull route for experts. It's already been raced and a lap record set and there are rumours of the whole area being used for stage racing in 1997.

So if you want to see how good marked trails can be head to Coed-y-Brenin.

Location: OS Landranger 124 (Dolgellau). Sandwiched between Snowdonia to the North and Cader Idris to the south the centre is well marked, about halfway between Dolgellau and Trawsfynydd on the A470. The whole area south of Snowdonia is slightly less dramatic, but a lot quieter and excellent for cycling.

Start: Coed-y-Brenin Forest Park Visitor Centre Facilities: Cafe and bike hire (both run by Sian and Dafydd). There's also a visitor centre, car parking and toilets. The cafe re-opens for 1997 at the end of March when it will be open daily.

Leaflets and Info: Maps of Red Bull and other routes available from Dafydd Dafis at Dolgellau Forest District on Tel: 01341 422289